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Back in the Close To My Heart saddle, that is. CTMH has a fantastic Consultant sign-up program going on now. I couldn’t pass it up. Since I have tons of paper crafting supplies and  CTMH supplies in particular, I signed up with the Essentials Kit for only $49 + shipping. And I’m getting a gorgeous Damask Tote Bag! If you’re just starting out in scrapbooking or stamping or new to Close To My Heart, you might want to get the Master Kit for $99 + shipping. The Damask Tote Bags are still available, but I don’t know how long they will last. You might want to send me an email (or post in the comments) if you want an update on availability.

I’ve been working more than usual lately. Well, I can’t say that anymore since I’ve been working like this since February. But time really gets away from me. That’s what happened when my kit came. I had been looking forward to the date for a week. But when the day came, I forgot what day it was. Late that night I checked my email and Fed Ex had sent a message saying they left my box on the front porch. I ran and got it and then remembered to grab my camera. For the first time ever, I actually remembered to take photos of special package.

The unopened box.

It came packed carefully, including the little air bags.

The note telling me that CTMH hasn’t received the tote bags yet and it will be shipped separately at the end of the month.

And the “Read Me First” letter to assist you in getting off to successful start.

The kit comes with the Avonlea Workshop on the Go kit.

I love this paper!

This is the color samples of all the CTMH exclusive cardstocks. A sample pack of all the Background & Texture (B&T) papers was included, also.

The packaging and labels are changing and CTMH is in a transition period now. The new style is on the right. I already have the Chocolate ink pad on the left. It may become part of a prize for a give-away in the future. I haven’t had a chance to think it all out yet.

I also already have these block for our Acrylix stamps. Yep, another give-way!

These are the two stamp sets included in the Essentials Kit. There is also a stamp set in the Avonlea Workshop on the Go kit.

I think I’m going to like decorating and personalizing the recipe/photo box. I can see so many possibilities!

The Fall/Winter 2012 catalogs. I do most of my shopping online, but I do love a catalog to curl up with in bed.

I emptied the box. I haven’t put anything away yet. It’s all on my scrapping desk. I love just going in and looking at everything again.  Today I finished a Bind-It-All project that I had started and didn’t get a chance play with my new toys. That will happen on my next day off from work. But the box isn’t still empty. I started filling it with older stamp sets that I haven’t used in ages and will pass them on to my Daughter-in-Law to use to preserve memories of her family and for the boys to use to stamp and craft and create.

As tempting as the Damask Tote Bag is, what tipped the scales for me to sign-up again with Close To My Heart are the many friends I’m made through the years of stamping and scrapping. I love the connection I have with my fellow consultants. They are some of the nicest, most supportive people I’ve ever met. And people is what this all about. Whether you want to preserve your family’s memories (and your own!) or create beautiful cards and gifts for those you love or join a group of artists with many of the same interests and goals as you, it’s all about Relationships and Connections.

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